Submitted by Darilyn Krieger, HFT
The meeting was called to order at 4:35 P.M... Administration, HFT, CHT, and HEA representatives were present.
First order of business was a proposed change in the PDAS/MPDAS calendar for 2009-2010 school years. The proposal is to advance the final date for observations 10 days to April 3rd. This would allow ten extra days for second observations to be made, in case of the need for a second appraisal, before the last 15 days of instruction. State law mandates that no observations can be made during the last 15 days of instruction.
HFT made note of a problem some principals have with using walk through as a punitive or intimidation tactic. HFT noted that some regional and executive principals were setting quotas for walk throughs. The administration representative responded that the intent of a walk through. They are intended to be an informal observation a snapshot, meant to lead to professional dialogue on teaching practices leading to teacher improvement. All principals have been trained but specific training on walk throughs has not been done in some time. Training on the walk through protocols will be included in the 2009-2010 training for principals et al.
HFT also mentioned the problem of principals asking teachers to sign for their assessments with the last three domains left blank. HFT stated this is contrary to state law. Administration agreed and will take note of issue.
SPM 3606C regarding district owned vehicles. The change is in authority for vehicles being driven home to require prior approval from the superintendent of schools.
SPM3607C Changes here are a title change from Executive General Manager to assistant superintendent.
Both SPM 3606C and 3607C ensure the use of district-owned vehicles for business purposed only.
Administration took HFT agenda item on school staffing out of order as administration respondent to the item had another meeting to attend. The district has currently staffed those schools without a school nurse with nurses paid for at district expense through the end of the school year. The issue of staffing for the 2009-2010 school year will need to be addressed by the district.
There will be a full time nurse at the Sam Houston Ninth grade Academy next year. The district has committed to this for the next school year.
SPM 3613D This SPM addresses Special Education Transportation and adds a form for requesting a transportation attendant and procedures for including the form in the ARD?IEP and copies to be forwarded to transportation services.
SPM 4603A This SPM regards Staff Development and is language intended to update to allow for varied delivery systems. It changes”Inservice and Activities” to “and Professional Learning Activities”.
CHT agenda items were addressed
First item was questions regarding teacher contracts and a request for the ratio of three year to one year contracts in past years.
Administration responded that they had no accessible data on the ratio requested but would obtain the data as soon as possible. The representative believed that the norm at the current time is a one-year contract. The HFT representative pointed out that when the district went to the term contract employees where in consultation guaranteed that there would be no one year contracts. Now we are seeing one year contracts and there are no criteria for contract term. It is strange that most new teachers are on two year contracts and when the two years are up they go to a one year contract. This indicates a philosophical change in how the district views the profession. Teaching is rapidly being deprofessionalized. We are not developing new teachers as the thinking is that it is less and less a career and more and more a stopgap to another profession.
Second item. Is there a policy on the number of night events that can be required by a principal? The former policy was three events, some principals are being unreasonable. Need an SPM on this to bring some reasonableness to the issue.
Third item Eligibility for transfer No changes have been made in the last year. One domain below then ineligible for transfer, Brochure is not clear. We need a flyer that spells out the requirements for transfer. Clarify the transfer rules and procedures. CHT suggested that the district consider extending the time for open transfer to the first part of June to allow HISD teachers to find jobs in the district instead of being forced to look in other districts. HFT agreed.
HFT Agenda items
This issue is under study and has been since March. This is in draft form, conversation is ongoing. Fallon stated that the commissioner has already stated that any policy requiring that a teacher not give a grade lower than a 50 will not be acceptable. Administration stated that weighting of grades should have the majority weight given to test, quizzes, projects and major assignments. Lower weight should be given to homework, practice and daily work. HFT said most teachers would have no problem with that except for mathematics teachers. The administration also stated that some categories are questionable for assessment such as participation or extra credit and should be looked at. Administration will add employee group representatives to the focus groups. HFT mentioned group work grades; Texas plan for G/T requires group work on a regular basis. Grade Speed does not assign a 50 minimum grade except for the final grade period average.
Teacher training for the grade speed program will train campus trainers the last week of July and the first week of August. Those trainers will train campus level teachers during training days before school. Parent training will take place before the first progress report. Will provide demo at next meeting
Worker’s comp injuries issue of injured choosing his/her own doctor. No reason for a statement on this.
End of year packing, letter going out to principal with details on this issue.
Consultation minutes are on the employee portal as of 5/7. Minutes for today will be up by end of the week.
4 hours ago